A Little House in the Big Woods day

Yesterday E and I set out to make anadama bread. As we mixed the cornmeal and milk, I told her the story of the Yankee woman who had left her husband only cornmeal mush. He added molasses, yeast, and flour to make a bread all the while saying "Anna damn her." Thus, anadama bread. She thought the mush was yucky until I reminded her that it was something that Laura and Mary had to eat.
The wheels were turning....

She then asked if we could have a "Little House in the Big Woods" day. You see, we had cornmeal mush and bread that pioneers might have eaten. We had molasses. We had snow. We could make snow candy like Laura and Mary did.

We had extra kids yesterday. After the big girls came in from sledding (look at H's pink cheeks!) and the little girls came downstairs starving after listening to Farmer Boy with its descriptions of food, we had popcorn. The yellow popcorn was bought at the grocery store, the white popcorn came from a local farm. The yellow popcorn had more flavor, but who knows what seed it came from.

We then moved on to "sugar on snow." I have never made a successful batch of sugar on snow--I think the snow was too cold, but I'm not sure. At any rate, the kids liked it.

We ended our day with bean soup and anadama bread. I'm sure if I had tried, we could have really had quite the "Little House" day, but this was what surfaced amongst all the other things going on!

Remember that post about baking bread, connecting with life, and slowing down? It worked.

Tara  – (January 21, 2008 at 8:25 AM)  

Wow! That sounds like a totally awesome day. I love how the kids thought it up and you were mellow enough to roll with the day. It seems the best times are made that way.

Dawn  – (January 21, 2008 at 9:50 AM)  

I'm glad the bread baking is working well for you. I love baking bread and I've never heard of Anadama bread- what a great idea! It sounds like a wonderful day.

:) Nicole –   – (January 21, 2008 at 2:32 PM)  

I love the bread-naming story. Nothing smells better than fresh bread! I found your blog today by way of buying the premier issue of Living Crafts. I have already subscribed! I have a nearly 20-month old and I loved the craft ideas that I will (all too soon) be able to do with her. I knit and spin, and I loved the patterns you included in the issue. Brava!

Jennifer  – (January 21, 2008 at 7:14 PM)  

How I love both Anadama bread (and doesn't the story behind the name make it nearly naughty to make and enjoy!), and sugar on snow (alas, no snow for many years since our VT days...). Have you been boiling the maple syrup long enough? I am pretty sure I remember our VT farmer friends boiling it for quite awhile before drizzling it across the snow and making little syrup pops with the forks...
Now, I'm off to find my old recipe for Anadama bread... and then for some little house time!

kristin  – (January 22, 2008 at 4:50 PM)  

what a lovely post! i used to make anadama bread when i was a child, but have never heard that story behind it :)

love your "theme day" of one of my favorite childhood book series too

Susan  – (January 24, 2008 at 11:33 PM)  

What a wonderful, cozy, winter day! Your girls sure are lucky!

Henitsirk  – (January 28, 2008 at 9:11 AM)  

Have you seen the Little House cookbook? You can find in on Amazon...I've made a few things with my kids from the recipes. It's nice because it gives some historical background on the food and cooking of those times, yet the recipes are modified for modern ovens, and sometimes modern ingredients (such as substituting butter for lard).

I'll have to find a recipe for anadama bread...sounds like a great one to make with kids.

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